Links: the Middle East

Powerline has some good analysis set up for simple people like me.

Captain Ed notes that Egypt is blaming Syria for the escalation.

Michelle Malkin give us this link to Arab thoughts on the goings on.

The Jawa Report notes the plan to keep Hezbollah from re-arming.

OPFOR has a great cartoon.

The Boston Globe notes the timing while the Washington Post is saying the US has limited options.

All of which I’d like to address more fully, but am late – again. Suffice it to say that it looks to me like Iran is pushing this thing for reasons that Powerline has probably hit upon. Along with the fact that blustering is what they do over there.
We are close by in Iraq. The Iraqi’s are doing better all the time. And we are still strong. I think we have plenty of options. It’s just a matter of choosing courses. From the WaPo:

The Bush administration has few ways of directly pressuring Iran on any of the three fronts. “They have sanctioned themselves out of leverage on Iran,” Malley said. “They have cornered themselves out of a lack of influence on any of the parties that are driving this — Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria and Iran. Counseling restraint or condemning actions is pretty meager when you think of the influence the United States should be wielding.”

The United States reached out to Arab allies — Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia — to weigh in with Syria and, through Damascus, to Iran. In Paris for talks on Iran’s nuclear program, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called on all sides to “act with restraint.” She also talked to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora and U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan.

But the U.S. options stand in stark contrast to the U.S.-brokered cease-fires in 1993 and 1996 between Israel and Hezbollah, via Syria.

Looking to the Group of Eight to start with sounds smart to me. Part of being able to influence Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria and Iran back in the day was paying them off in some fashion or another. Which is part (emphasis PART) of why “the street” hates us now. We keep supporting whackjobs. Now that we’re done with that (sorry – trying not to be totally naive here) I think our options are even greater.
Up to and including pushing the truth of Iran’s involvement enought to where there is a worldwide excuse for striking their nuclear facilities. Austin Bay has some analysis of recent events. We got options….

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